There is always something new to discover and enjoy when it comes to anime. There is a level of freedom that allows the anime to explore types of stories that would be impossible in other mediums and there is many unique genres that meet specific interests and demographics.
Shojo content is manga or anime aimed at a younger female audience. Many are quickly ditching the shojo series, but there are plenty of anime in the genre that defy expectations. Some are really worth looking at in full.
ten Revolutionary girl Utena overthrows Shojo standards on her head
Those who reject the shojo genre are probably thinking of the kind of magical pretty girl who is dominated by content like sailor moon and Sakura card sensor. Revolutionary girl Utena is the perfect alternative for those who are not interested in the typical gender roles of shojo girls. Utena is an excellent female protagonist who aspires to take on the role of prince and protect others, rather than being the damsel in distress. Utena almost adopts a shonen sensitivity to Utena’s journey and the battles she easily engages in. RGU a pivotal series of shojo.
9 Wonder Egg Priority asks deep, gloomy questions through its incredible adventure
The anime audiences have become so savvy with the medium that the programs have taken greater stylistic and subversive risks. Priority to Wonderful Eggs takes a long time to fully show his hand. While this initially looks like an unassuming shojo series, it works in psychological horror, fantasy, and heavy questions about life, death, and fate. Ai struggles to overcome the suicide of her close friend, and a simple toy she obtains opens an incredible path for her. Priority to Wonderful Eggs is consistently unpredictable and perfect for those who want something more adult and stimulating than the standard shojo series.
8 Nana is a delicate take on honest and imperfect female friendships
There’s an abundance of shojo material that leans into fantasy and over-the-top storytelling, whether it’s a magical girl, an isekai, or whatever. Nana is a breath of fresh air. It examines an incredibly grounded and genuine friendship between two women in their early twenties, who are both called Nana, however, have very contrasting personalities.
Nana is such a thoughtful meditation on relationships, self-discovery, and the painful and unexpected directions life can take. Nana could also be considered josei material as it focuses on young adults, but it still fits the shojo mold.
seven Glass Mask breaks down the ups and downs of booming actors
Glass mask is a 22-episode shojo animated series from the 1980s that is often overlooked. IIt’s one of the better series when it comes to slice-of-life drama and a more humble level of competition. Glass mask pits Maya Kitajima and Ayumi Himekawa as rivals, but their battle unfolds on stage as they vie for the lead role in the revered play, “The Crimson Goddess.” Glass Mask reaches the exciting heights of other shojo materials, but filters it through the cutthroat field of acting.
6 Vampire Knight presents the war on vampires in a very different light
The Shojo series can feature a more appeased version of violence or find magical ways to hide death and bloodshed. Vampire Knight could be the perfect shojo series for those who have never been able to adapt to the genre. Vampires populate many animated series, but the heroine of this series, Yuki, occupies a complicated role that blurs the line between good and evil, human and vampire. Yuki’s unique perspective and the places she visits in 26 episodes presents a very different Shojo narrative.
5 Ouran High School Host Club is pure comfort that feels like a warm hug
Sometimes the best shojo anime are low stakes series that create a cozy energy where you just have to hang out with funny characters.
Ouran High School Host Club begins with Haruhi Fujioka’s enrollment in Ouran Academy, where she quickly befriends a group of charming young men. Haruhi’s energy with the members of this host club is endlessly entertaining. OSHST is a comfortable version of harem dynamics, but in an incredibly healthy way.
4 Yona of the Dawn creates a powerful and prolific protagonist
Yona of the dawn is an incredibly well-structured shojo series that has a lot in common with the more progressive Disney princess movies. This should be enough to attract some viewers who are generally skeptical of shojo’s storytelling. Yona of the dawn pits enthusiastic princess, Yona, on a perilous journey that she undertakes with her bodyguard, General Hak. It would be so easy for Yona and Hawk’s dynamic to become reductive, but Yona of the dawn uses their bond to reinforce the anime’s storytelling rather than filling out outdated archetypes.
3 Yashahime: Princess Half-Demon continues InuYasha’s story from a new perspective
A growing trend in all forms of pop culture is to reboot classic series with legacy sequels that focus on a new generation of heroes. Inu Yasha was a major shonen series from the early 2000s that had a lot of crossover with the shojo genre due to its heavy focus on Kagome and Inuyasha romance. Yashahime: Half-Demon Princess look at the offspring of Inu Yasha to throw, but Towa, Setsuna, and Moroha are all young women, which immediately gives this sequel a unique take on the Inu Yasha universe.
2 The rose of Versailles looks to historical events for emotional magnitude
The anime tells stories that would often be impossible elsewhere. The rose of Versailles is a humble shojo series that uses the backdrop of the French Revolution for the inspiration behind this love story. The rose of Versailles focuses specifically on Marie-Antoinette and Lady Oscar, who have complex backgrounds that are tailor-made for the type of issues encountered in the shojo genre. The rose of Versailles tells an intimate story that uses the past when necessary, but which is not unnecessarily indebted to it either.
1 Puella Magi Madoka Magica is the ultimate deconstruction of Magical Girl
It’s the most overexposed types of stories that become the most rewarding to subvert and satire because there is such a story behind it all. Puella Magi Madoka Magica should be a must watch for any anime fan, but especially for someone who has been on the fence with the shojo series. Madoka Magica tells what initially appears to be a conventional magical girl tale, but it grazes the dark side of everything and presents this transformative experience as a Faustian gamble that threatens the safety of the main characters. PMMM is a brilliant mix of genres, themes and aesthetics.
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